Through parallel fashion and photography competitions, the Festival International de Mode et de Photographie à Hyères, directed by Jean-Pierre Blanc since its creation 27 years ago, gathers every year under the spotlight ten young fashion designers and ten young photographers under the patronage of an international jury.
An observatory of trends as well as an international launching pad, the Hyères festival has showcased, more than 300 first-time collections by new fashion designers from all over the world and exhibited the works of over 130 young and innovative photographers. On every edition, the festival presents at the Villa Noailles —the landmark cubist villa built in the 1920’s by Mallet-Stevens — several exhibitions that explore the permeating boundaries between art, photography and fashion.
The Festival’s public increases year after year, attracting designers, industrialists, trendwatchers, agents, buyers, textile federations, distributors, gallerists, museum directors, department stores.
The festival's aim is to offer young talents a genuine professional opportunity by providing them with material and logistical support, as well as profitable contacts and intensive media exposure. The general public is invited to vote after the fashion shows for an audience award. All exhibitions are admission-free and remain open until end of May.
On the three days of the festival, young fashion designers present to the public their first collection in a series of three fashion shows directed by Maïda Gregoiri-Boina. Their proposals are examined and assesed by an attentive jury of industry professionals.
Numerous talents revealed by the past 25 editions of the festival's Fashion Competition have since become essential names in the world of fashion: Viktor & Rolf, Gaspard Yurkievich, Anke Loh, Alexandre Matthieu, Felipe Oliveira Baptista, Thierry Rondenet et Hervé Yvrenogeau (Own), Xavier Delcour, Cyd Jouny, Marc Le Bihan, Karine Arabian, Sébastien Meunier, Goran Pejkoski, Crstof Beaufays, Christian Wijnants, Rivière de Sade, Sandrina Fasoli, Laurent Edmond, Ute Ploier, Hamid Ed-Dakhissi, Henrik Vibskov, Richard René, Daniel Ledermann, Swash, C-Neeon, Romain Kremer, Julien Dossena, Sandra Backlund, Matthew Cunnington, Jean-Paul Lespagnard, Mareunrol's, Alexandra Verschueren, Yiqin Yin, Léa Peckre, Céline Méteil... To cite only a prominent few. The Festival’s tight-knit bonds with the fashion industry are one of its major assets: leading fashion companies sponsor all events and awards, and thus mark their engagement towards young talent.
In an environment where the development of new fashion brands is becoming increasingly difficult, it is vital--now more than ever--to help young designers meet the challenges of the industrial process and, ultimately, the market. Indeed, without either of the two there would be little incentive to create new designs. Through its sponsors, the Hyères Festival is committed to providing emerging designers with the right kind of support.
Ten years ago, the Hyères Festival opened its doors to young photography with the same pioneering spirit with which it approaches fashion. The Festival grants creative young talents a unique opportunity to exhibit their work, confront points of view with their peers, and, first and foremost, defend their photographic portafolios in a one-to-one dialogue with art directors, managers of galleries and art institutions, established photographers and a wide variety of professionals working with images (agents, brand representatives, etc.).
The pictures of the photographers in competition will be displayed in a group exhibition. A poster campaign with their work will cover the ten cities in the region. The Festival’s Photography Competition is aimed to push photographers forward — artistically, editorially, commercially— and every year it produces a different creative synergy that nourishes and revitalizes fashion photography. The festival has helped to launch many a carreer and initiated fruitful collaborations.
Camille Vivier, Olivier Amsellem, Anushka Blommers and Niels Schumm, Sølve Sundsbø, Martine Stig, Morgane LeGall, Daniel Stier, Vava Ribeiro, Martha Camarillo, Erwan Frotin, Charles Fréger, Joël Tettamanti, Mathieu Bernard-Reymond, Loan Nguyen, Timur Çelikdag, Franco Musso and Luciana Val, Nico Krebs and Taiyo Onorato, Thomas Mailaender, Kathryn Hillier Melanie Bonajo, Emmeline de Mooij, Carlo Van de Roer, Yann Gross, Matthieu Lavanchy, Alejandra Laviada, Linus Bill, Jaap Scheeren, Estelle Hanania, have all shown their work at Hyères.